West Virginia native returning to his home state after four years in Norman.
April 29, 2010
NORMAN, Okla. - University of Oklahoma head men's basketball coach Jeff Capel announced today that assistant coach Mark Cline is taking an assistant coaching position at Marshall University.
"I've known Mark for a good part of my life and it's sad to see him leave," said Capel. "This was an opportunity for him to get back home and to his family, and I wish him well. I appreciate the relationship we've had and the work he's done at OU."
Cline, from Williamson, W. Va., said the decision to leave for Marshall, which is located in Huntington, W. Va., was a difficult one.
"I have loved my time at Oklahoma and this was not an easy choice," he said. "I've known Jeff for almost 25 years and I have the utmost respect for him. I thank him for the opportunities he's given me and wish nothing but the best for him and for Oklahoma. In the end, the chance to get back to my home state was one I couldn't pass up."
Over the past four years, Cline, who came to OU in April 2006, helped the Sooners to an 82-51 record (.617) and to two NCAA Tournament appearances. OU advanced to the second round in 2008 and to the Elite Eight in 2009.
Among his OU pupils was 2009 consensus National Player of the Year Blake Griffin.
Cline's relationship with the Capel family dates back to his days as an assistant coach at Fayetteville State (1989-93) where he served under Capel's father, Jeff Capel Jr. He transitioned with Capel Jr. to North Carolina A&T for the 1993-94 season before following him to Old Dominion where he spent five seasons.
Cline, 45, served four years as an assistant and associate head coach at Virginia Tech (1999-2003) before joining the staff of the up-and-coming Capel at Virginia Commonwealth for three seasons.
A two-time West Virginia High School Player of the Year who was a McDonald's All-American, Cline starred at Wake Forest University (1983-87) and finished his career with 1,202 points to rank 17th on the school's all-time list.